Entry By Jason Brick
Running your small business can feel like working in a vacuum. You keep working your plans, but lack the feedback and example of other players in the game. This is doubly true of mobile marketing -- a promotional field new enough that there isn't a strong data infrastructure to which you can compare your results.
Industry will catch up in good time. Meanwhile, you can draw inspiration from these three wildly successful mobile initiatives:
Marks and Spencer
British retailer M&S decided in 2010 to take the mobile plunge. Instead of going with a simple app or SMS marketing campaign, they opted to design a mobile portal for retail purchases direct from customers' mobile devices. In less than two years, Marks and Spenser rose to be the number one ranking mobile retailer in the world. Not only are they successfully selling to mobile customers, but they're selling items not normally purchased electronically -- including furniture and large-screen plasma televisions.
Expert analysis identifies three key characteristics behind Marks & Spenser's success:
- A dedicated mobile site -- incoming connections to their website identify the kind of device that will view their page. Mobile devices are routed to an experience optimized for those devices.
- Simple programming for a fast load time -- just over half the time of the average 10-second load for mobile retail.
- Reliable purchasing leading to a 100 percent success rate on attempts to buy. Retailers average about 93 percent -- but losing seven percent of sales can make a big difference.
In a campaign to raise awareness, Pontiac offered a place in a drawing for $1,000,000 every time somebody texted a photo of a G6 they found in the field. Responses were immediate and impressive. Although Pontiac hasn't released exact numbers, sales for the year of the promotion numbered over 120,000 luxury cars -- as compared to only 16,000 for the year before.
The Pontiac campaign is an excellent example of eliciting a response from potential clients. It got people who may only have been interested in the prize keep a lookout for the product, raising brand awareness across multiple markets.
The keys to this success included:
- Solid integration of print and broadcast media with the mobile response campaign.
- A compelling call to action that required no immediate outlay of cash from potential responders.
- Simple interaction mechanic -- snapping a photo and sending it to a widely advertised email address.
In a desperate attempt to inform the remaining three people in the world who don't know what Nike sells, the sports apparel giant has embraced the mobile marketing world with a series of apps. In some cases partnered directly with Apple for the iPod, these fitness apps, like MyCoach, help users plan and execute fitness training regimens. Nike coupled this with real-time response campaigns like their Nike ID initiative in Times Square.
Although they didn't release specific numbers about the campaign's success, their mobile marketing frequently leads lists of the most successful mobile marketing campaigns to date.
Nike's success with their mobile marketing relied upon:
- Multiple mobile platforms and styles, to appeal to a wide general audience.
- Giving potential customers tools that help them use the merchandise they sell.
- Pushing information about the new campaigns through more traditional media sources.